You can create the rubric ahead and then associate it with an assignment: Control Panel > Course Tools > Rubrics > Create Rubric > Enter name and description > edit the rubric grid as desired > Submit. One problem I ran into is trying to put too much text in a rubric “square.”
Or you can access an assessment such as an assignment (or an interactive tool such as a discussion board) then choose Edit from the action link button. If necessary, enable grading (e.g. discussion boards). Associated Rubrics > Add Rubric > Create or Select Rubric. Set rubric visibility > Yes (With Rubric Scores) > Submit.
You can also manually create a new grade column in the grade center and attach a rubric (like you might use for participation).
When you grade, you can click View Rubric to fill in the rubric associated with the assessment. Click the check boxes, provide feedback, and save the grade. It is going to take some time to figure out the best way to create rubrics so they work the way we want them to.
You can import and export rubrics. Let’s say a colleague is willing to export his/her rubrics and email you the zipped folder. In Blackboard, go to Control Panel > Course Tools > Rubrics > Import Rubric > Browse My Computer to find the zipped folder your colleague sent to you > Submit (wait a few minutes until it finishes and click OK). Now you can use the rubrics as is, edit them, or make a copy to edit.